Tuesday, June 2, 2009

158 - The cup sizes in coffeehouses

Say I wanted a large cappuccino to go.

The barista will then ask me, "Do you mean a

No, I mean a
large, because venti is Italian for 'twenty'. Tall is a synonym of large, and grande is Spanish for large. It's actually quite amusing, because, in fact, venti is the only one that doesn't mean large, and it's the only one in Italian.

And when I say I want
large, I am speaking in American English, implying that I want the biggest of all the cups, the cups available being small, medium and large.

I find it quite ridiculous that if I wanted the smallest cup, I would have to request a tall.

To them, tall means small.

I seriously, don't get it. So, to you, your
smalls are talls? What?

You call
smalls, 'talls'?

Seriously, why don't you just
call your small, 'small', afterall, from what I can recall, small does not mean tall, small means small, 'cause tall is taller than a small, and small is smaller than a tall.

Is this some sort of joke? Is this an attempt to make us feel like we're getting a lot of coffee for the same price? To make us feel like we have tall cups, and grande amounts of coffee in our cups? Is this Starbucks trying to give us the sense of "we can be like sophisticated Italian coffee consumers, 'cause we've got venti-ounce cups."

It probably is a marketing ploy. But, dude, it doesn't make any sense.

I refuse to play this game with the coffeehouse people. I want 'the big one' and that's final.

No, not a venti, not a grande, the big one. If you give me anything smaller, I'll only ask you to supersize me.


Writers Block said...

This is similar to how some cults work, in that they get to use a new language for things in order to make you feel part of a group.
Be wary my friend - it's only a small step from here on in to having your friends kidnap you from starbucks HQ for deprogramming...
On a similar note, my local cinema has stopped selling small anything altogether, they just do medium, large, and realy realy large

Randa said...

Haha. I don't know why but this whole post cracked me up. I personally do hate that I can't just call it a small. And then they look at you like you're some kind of amateur if you get it wrong. Makes me wanna scream.

J.J. in L.A. said...

This is why I don't drink coffee. Well, that...and the fact that I don't like the taste. ; )

Eugene said...

Er.. I'm confused.

If someone would ASK me that, I'd just answer them the scientific way.

"16 oz., please. Wait, what? What's 16 oz. in Metric system? Don't ask me. Doesn't your cups have those indicators? No? Nevermind. Cancel my order."

Douglas said...

The answer is simple... Do not patronize such places. I don't. I buy coffee only occasionally... after a nice meal... in a restaurant. I brew my own coffee at home. Where I pay for a can of coffee what you would pay for a venti sized cup.
If more people would try, just a little, to be rational and not try to be trendy this stuff wouldn't happen.

But, then, what would you have left to write about?

Never mind.

Ruchi said...

Around here, where I come from, we have large, medium and regular. So, again you dont really have the option of small...I wonder why?

Leah said...

We have size problems like this in Australia. We just say, 'Listen mate, don't be a wanker, just hurry and give me a bloody coffee, awright?'

Elizabeth said...





Madame DeFarge said...

All these joys await you in London too. I loathe the names and just want small, medium and large. Btw, the offer of tea and cakes still stands. How did the exams go?

RenRexx said...

this actually reminds me to ask for SMALL when i go to Jack n' the box, because apparently, when you order what's on the menu, and you don't say if you want small, you get A MEDIUM sized meal, and they upcharge you for it without you realizing it.

that's a topic for a blog...... thanks!